All happiness depends on a leisurely breakfast. -John Gunther
For the Idli – Wash and soak the lentils for 2-3 hours. Wash and drain the rice. Grind the lentils and rice in a blender until the mixture is smooth and frothy. Mix the salt and baking soda and set aside in a warm place overnight for fermenting. Idlis are ready to be cooked when the batter is well fermented. Grease the Idli maker and fill them 3/4 full of batter. Steam cook idlis on medium-high for about 15 minutes or until firm. Use a large metal spoon to remove the idlis.
For the Coconut-Mint Chutney – Grind the coconut into a fine paste in the food processor. In a small pan, heat the oil, once hot add the mustard seeds, curry leaves, and green chillies. Fry until the chilies start to sputter. Remove and add to the coconut paste. Add salt and chopped mint, mix well. Chill and serve.
For the Sambar – Pressure cook the yellow split lentils in a saucepan with 3 cups water (one whistle should be enough, make sure lentils are soft.) Heat the oil in a small skillet over medium heat, and add the mustard seed, cumin seed, curry leaves, turmeric powder, and asafoetida powder. Once the mustard seeds start to sputter and the mixture is fragrant add the onions. Once the onions turn translucent add the potato, tomato, drumsticks, and mixed vegetables. Cook on medium heat for 10 minutes or until vegetables are slightly cooked. You don’t want to cook them too long otherwise they will become mushy later. Meanwhile, grind the coriander seeds, coconut and chilies to a paste using a mortar and pestle or food processor. Add this paste to the vegetables along with the tamarind pulp. Once mixed, add mixture to the lentils and bring to a boil for 5-10 minutes. Serve hot.